A new book by this author is always welcome and this title is no exception. Big Summer is a summer read but one with a bit of food (apologies for the pun) for thought. Protagonist Daphne has spent much of her life struggling with her weight and the impact this has on her self-esteem. As the novel opens, she is an “influencer” who is feeling better about herself.
Daphne lives with a roommate she likes and has caring and supportive parents. She cares for two children whom she likes, and maintains all of her social accounts. But…her life is about to change.
When Daphne was in 6th grade, she enrolled in the private school where her father taught. While there, she made some good friends including her current roommate. She also came under the spell of Drue. Drue seemed to have everything that Daphne wanted and when Drue offered her friendship, even a flawed one, Daphne was willing to accept this. Of course, she subsequently got hurt as happens when one cedes to the desires of a mean girl.
After a period of about 6 years, Drue comes back into Daphne’s life again seeming to offer Daphne something but, of course, also wanting something. What will happen moving forward? No spoilers so you will have to read the book to find out.
This book touches on some issues that matter: the importance of family, the nature of friendship, self-acceptance and self-esteem are some of them. Another is what it means to live life by social media posts. Never hitting readers over the head, Ms. Weiner just invites them to think while they enjoy a Big Summer.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title in exchange for an honest review.